What has made Diamondbacks star Ketel Marte’s hitting streak so unique?

May 19, 2024, 7:15 PM

Corbin Carroll and Ketel Marte...

Corbin Carroll #7 and Ketel Marte #4 of the Arizona Diamondbacks celebrate after scoring in the sixth inning against the Baltimore Orioles at Oriole Park at Camden Yards on May 12, 2024 in Baltimore, Maryland. (Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

(Photo by Greg Fiume/Getty Images)

Arizona Diamondbacks second baseman Ketel Marte ended one of Major League Baseball’s rarest streaks in history.

Not his 18-game hitting streak — he kept that intact during Sunday’s 6-4 win against the Detroit Tigers in a loud way. He hit a 110 mph single off Matt Manning to keep the longest active hitting streak in the majors going.

The streak he ended closed during his next at-bat when Marte singled to right field. The switch-hitter had exactly one hit in 15 consecutive games entering Sunday, which had only been done three times, according to Baseball Reference’s database.

Over his 18-game streak, his batting average has actually dropped from .307 to .292. Marte, though, has 10 extra-base hits on this run with four homers.

Ted Sizemore in 1975 for the St. Louis Cardinals remains the only player with 16 straight games picking up exactly one hit.

Jimmy Rollins in 2014 and Alex Gonzalez in 2005 did it for 15 games each.

Ketel Marte’s impact

This season, Marte is Arizona’s WAR leader by a wide margin at 2.6 rWAR (Baseball Reference) entering Sunday, which ranked ninth in MLB. Christian Walker was second on the team at 1.6.

Marte leads the D-backs in hits, doubles, triples and home runs. Perhaps his five-year All-Star Game wait is coming to an end.

“It’s loud contact, 110 mph line drive to get that extra number,” manager Torey Lovullo said. “Just engaged, playing a very high level and caring about the right things.

“Let me tell you something about this hitting streak, this is what’s most impressive to me about Ketel Marte and speaks volumes about who he is as a teammate and an Arizona Diamondback. The other day he did not start. I told him the game was looking like it was going to be close. He hadn’t set a personal best. It was 12 or 13 at that time, but he was charging hard after that.

“I went to him and I said, ‘I know what we’d normally do, either you’re going to tie the score or put us ahead, that’s when I’m going to use you … I know you’ve got this hitting streak,’ and he said ‘The hitting streak doesn’t matter to me, what matters is the team and winning baseball games, period.’ I walked away and that described exactly who Ketel Marte is.”

As for Marte’s place in Diamondbacks lore, there have been only five 19-game hitting streaks in franchise history. He can join that group Monday at the Dodgers.

What is the longest hitting streak in Diamondbacks history?

Luis Gonzalez’s 30-game streak back in 1999 paces the franchise leaderboard.

Paul Goldschmidt got to 26 games in 2013. Tony Womack had a 24-gamer in 2000, and Danny Bautista got to 21 games in 2004. Matt Williams had a 19-game hitting streak in 1999.

There are five 18-game streaks in team history: Ender Inciarte (2014), Miguel Montero (2011), Justin Upton (2009), Junior Spivey (2002) and Mark Grace (2001).

Marte has an MLB postseason record with a 20-game hitting streak.

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What has made Diamondbacks star Ketel Marte’s hitting streak so unique?